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I use ultralight tent (600 grams + 120 g for the pegs) and I got idea that perhaps I would sleep better in hammock. I wonder what to do about ticks if I use hammock and other insects, that is my major concern. I would use it in short hikes, 3 day ones so there won't be any rain and with combo of down sleeping bag.

What are your experiences?

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  • What sort of sleeping mat do you currently use? If you like being able to shut out the bugs, maybe your sleeping mat is where you should be looking for comfort
    – Chris H
    Jun 24 at 15:59
  • I use 2 cm foam. I am afraid to use inflatable sleeping pad, because I sleep on rocky soil a lot and it could puncture. I don't want to carry too heavy sleeping pad. Are 400-500 g inflatable sleeping pads well resistant to punctures on rocky soil?
    – Alex J.
    Jun 24 at 16:09
  • Can you sleep in a hammock at all? I can't: my body can't relax or rest in that unnatural curved shape it puts you in. Jun 24 at 16:31
  • @WeatherVane, try a different kind of hammock, the South American kind allows you to turn on your side and be flat thay way.
    – Willeke
    Jun 24 at 16:44
  • @AlexJ. I use this one. So far so good; I put a thin cheap tarp underneath to protect it. But you've got a tent floor to protect yours - I mean you must if your tent keeps the bugs out, or they could just come under the walls. Does that get punctured Foam roll mats aren't an option for me on the bike, because they're so huge even a 1cm mat wouldn't fit in my saddlebag (recent pictures of my setup for over a week). It's really far more comfortable than foam
    – Chris H
    Jun 24 at 20:29

2 Answers 2

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I personally prefer sleeping in a hammock and try to do so whenever the terrain can accommodate it. A couple things to consider:

Regarding bugs, I use a bug net that surrounds the entire hammock. I like this better than the style that zips into the hammock and just covers the top half. It gives me a lot more living space and I can toss stuff over the side of my hammock when I go to sleep and have access to it in the middle of the night (ex, my jacket/headlamp). I also means when the hammock gets worn out I just have to replace that instead of both. It does add a bit more weight though since it's more mesh material.

Regarding temperature, hammocks are cold. Very cold. Any slight breeze and you lose a lot of your heat. A single down bag is not enough. Since down you are top of gets crushed, so you'll either need a wide camping pad, or even better an underquilt. A tarp, even when it isn't raining, can be nice for cutting down heat loss to wind. But a tarp adds weight, you lose pretty views, and have one more thing to setup.

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I made a field test and I can say that sleeping in a hammock doesn't suit me. Ultra light tent is way better for me.

Like @noah said, hammocks are cold. Even in normal temperatures, warmly dressed and using down sleeping bag I felt very cold for 2 nights and I slept very little. Terrible. The problem was the bottom, even if i used survival foil between sleeping bag and hammock. In some places the down is crushed more and I got cold spots.

If I use tent, sleeping pad and the same down bag I feel more than enough warm.

Using mummy sleeping bag and hammock is very unpractical. It is hard to get into in, close the zippers,...

My setup: 1p tent, pegs, sleeping pad, down bag is: 1,6 kg(3,5 pounds). I thought I would save some weight with hammock. Hammock setup: Hammock, ropes, down sleeping bag = 1,1 kg (2,4 pounds).

In my experience it is much better to carry a little more and sleep in a tent with sleeping pad. 0,5 kg less weight is not worth it.

I can say the good thing is more pristine wilderness experience, wild animals near you:) I think that mosquitos were not a problem. I used cheap mosquito net from the supermarket just to cover the face.

So tent is my choice. Hammock is way too cold. Perhaps I would use hammock for more static vacation, if I would spend sometime near beach, drink beer, lie down and could carry extra weight for blankets,.. I hike a lot so in my case the tent is way better for me.

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  • The way some people keep a warm lower side in a hammock is to have a blanket on the outside of the hammock, but that is something extra to carry.
    – Willeke
    Jul 15 at 14:19
  • Thanks for sharing you experience.
    – Willeke
    Jul 15 at 14:20

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